How to Migrate to the US Through EB-2 NIW Visa

The EB-2 NIW (National Interest Waiver) visa is a pathway for certain individuals with exceptional abilities or advanced degrees to migrate to the United States without the need for a specific job offer. Here’s a comprehensive guide to understanding and navigating the EB-2 NIW visa process.

Step by Step Procedures

• Determine Eligibility: Ensure you meet the advanced degree or exceptional ability criteria.

• File Form I-140: Submit the Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, along with the required evidence and fee.

• Wait for Approval: Processing times can vary from 10.5 to 26.5 months.

• Visa Bulletin: Once I-140 is approved, check the Visa Bulletin for visa availability.

• Adjustment of Status or Consular Processing: If in the US, file Form I-485; if abroad, apply for a visa at a US consulate.

Documents and Requirements

• Form I-140: Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker.

• Evidence of Advanced Degree or Exceptional Ability: Such as diplomas, letters from employers, or proof of achievements.

• Letters of Recommendation: From peers or leaders in your field.

• Labor Certification: Not required for NIW, but you must demonstrate that your work is in the national interest.

Total Cost Breakdown

The costs associated with the EB-2 NIW visa can vary greatly depending on whether you are applying from within the US or abroad, and whether you choose to hire an attorney. Here’s a general breakdown:

• Form I-140 Filing Fee: $700.

• Form I-485 Filing Fee: $1,140 (if adjusting status in the US).

• Biometrics Fee: $85.

• Medical Examination: $200 to $500.

• Translation of Documents: $50 to $500.

• Credential Evaluation: $200 to $500.

• Optional Premium Processing: $2,500.

Note: Attorney fees, if applicable, can range from $5,000 to $15,000.


Migrating to the US through the EB-2 NIW visa is a complex process that requires careful planning and attention to detail. By understanding the steps, requirements, and associated costs, you can better prepare for a successful application. Always consider consulting with an immigration attorney to guide you through the process.

Remember, this information is based on the current understanding of the process and costs, and it’s essential to check the latest guidelines from official sources or seek professional advice for the most up-to-date information.

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